One of the most contentious cases in the United States is the child custody cases. In the end, the judge will determine what to do. The judge will make the decision as to visitation and custody. However, one of the parents will disagree with what the judge decides. For this reason, he will take this matter into what he wants. If one of the parents fails to agree to what the judge says, the parent could face a custodial interference charge. In this case, he would have failed to return the child after visitation. This parent is likely to face a custodial interference charge. Under the New York Penal Code, you could be accused of the second-degree custodial interference charge if you take the child from his or her lawful custody and you:
1. Have no legal right to do so
2. Intend to have the child kept under your custody for a protracted time or permanently
3. Are a relative of a child who is 16-years-old and below.
Or you take someone who is incompetent from the lawful custody or a person who has been entrusted from another person. In this case, you must be the legal owner of the child.
Benjamin visits his three-year-old daughter three days a week by a court order. For the rest of the four remaining days, his ex-wife has the child in custody. When the time comes for him to return the child to his ex-wife as the lawful custodian, the child decided to stay for more than three days. However, the ex-wife decided to have the child returned to her with an immediate effect. For this reason, Benjamin acquiesced. Benjamin refused to hear her ex-wife’s demands and decided to stay with the child as she wanted. Benjamin would not face any second-degree custodial interference charge because he did not keep her daughter for a protracted period. As stated in the statute, one day is not enough for him to face that charge.
1. First-degree custodial interference charge: New York Penal Code 135:50
You could not be guilty of custodial interference in the second degree if you took the child from someone who was not legally allowed to keep the child. If you reasonably believe that your child was in danger of emotional or physical harm, then you have a valid defense case against the charges.
Second-degree Custodial interference is a Class A misdemeanor. You can only face a one-year prison term as the maximum sentence for this action. Instead of a jail term, the judge might also decide to give you a probation term. A three-year probation term is enough for you.
New York Penal Law 135.45: Custodial interference in the second degree
A person is said to be guilty of the first-degree custodial interference when:
1. Being a relative of a 16-year-old child and below, intending to hold that child for a protracted period or permanently, and knowing that you have no legal right to do such an action, he entices or takes the child from the lawful custodian.
The NYC Criminal Attorneys Law Firm
Being arrested for the second-degree custodial interference is one of the worst cases against children. Many aspects of your life will change with respect to your relationship with family members and friends. However, there are many defenses to a second-degree custodial interference charge that is understood by an experienced legal practitioner. If you are being investigated for that charge, ensure you contact someone who is extremely experienced in the New York criminal court system. The staff at NYC Criminal Attorneys Law Firm offers an unparalleled representation.